Living proof.

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I had to order my blood pressure medicine today and the site I use, drugstore.com, has switched pharmacy providers. This meant I had to go through the whole rigmarole of registering and transferring information to the new site. However, there was one moment that had me wearing an ear-to-ear grin. I was asked to pick a security question. I chose the first one: “What is the name of a favorite actor, musician or band?”

Gee, what do you think my answer was?

And I found myself wondering if I was the first person to use him as their answer. And then wondering if that just might change in a few months;  musing over whether or not he’ll become lots and lots of people’s choice as “favorite actor.”

I am pretty sure Richard isn’t interested in winning any popularity contests, of course. He’s all about his craft. Richard stays focused on the work, preparing for his roles, doing his homework, making the most of each character, creating a layered, nuanced performance.

I was not in the least surprised to read  in Frenzy’s interview that Black Sky producer Todd Garner thinks Richard is a good writer, nor to discover some of RA’s ideas are being worked into the film, including the trailer. RA is a smart and insightful fellow as well as a very talented one. I believe his input can only improve a project.

Once more, I feel incredibly proud of him and for him. I think of the people who have referred to Richard in the past as “wooden” and “OK eye candy.” Of the ones who dismissed him as an actor because you surely cannot be that good looking and also be genuinely talented and have brains, can you?

Well, yes, as a matter of fact, you can be. You can be a man of breathtaking masculine beauty who is also an amazingly detailed actor bringing breadth and depth to your characters.  You can be these things and also be a truly nice, gracious,modest, generous, intelligent, insightful human being.  A gentleman who wins the admiration and respect of fellow cast and crew members.  You can be a stellar human being on the cusp of major stardom, with no one deserving more it than you.  You can be an example of the nice guy NOT finishing last.

Richard Armitage is living proof.

And yes, I know I am gushing, but really–it is hard not to when it comes this darling man.

86 responses »

  1. I feel this enormous burst of pride when I see things like this. It just validates and reaffrims for me what I believe in my heart about him and the faith I have put in him that he always puts his best into each role. God bless you, RA and may your tribe increase.

    • I imagine that Richard will enjoy collaboration with Beaufoy as two strong talents spark one another. And what Richard takes away from the experience will just add to his abilities. Anticipating future delights…

        • Frenz and I have been speculating him following a trajectory similar to Clint Eastwood, who still acts but also directs and writes. Clint’s done pretty well for himself–his stuff has won Oscars–and no offense to Mr. Eastwood, but I think RA could do even better for himself.

          • I agree completely. Talent does seem to cluster in individuals, and Richard has already shown us that he’s got lots, that there’s bound to be a lot more we haven’t seen yet.

            • I feel there is so much potential and so many possibilities ahead for Richard. I think our late bloomer is well and truly coming into his own, bless his modest heart. Honestly, I almost tear up just thinking about it all–happy tears, you know?

        • I’m selfish the same way, but I hope he doesn’t have to keep working harder and harder at staying in shape to do it. At some point, you’d think the man would have earned the right to pizza and beer.

          • Yeah, as much as I appreciate the results of all his workouts, I also know that it gets harder the older you get to maintain a certain buffness. And as much as he obviously enjoys his food and drink, I would like for him to be able to kick back and indulge now and again.

            • Let’s hope he’ll be able to do just that! I don’t think he’s in danger of ever growing a beer belly- he doesn’t seem to be the type. I think he’ll cut an imposing figure even in his 60s- a bit like Charles Dance!

      • I think his experience with PJ must have been (and will continue to be!) such an educational one in terms of the art and craft of movie making (and writing). Now he can bring some of what he has learned to the table for this film. Richard once more going from strength to strength as he has always desired to do.

        • I’m curious to learn about any input he may have had on the Hobbit. Because at Comic Con he did say that he did totally rely on PJ and his vision of the whole thing and his character and that didn’t sound much like RA. Maybe that was him being modest or PJ is so good that there is nothing to add.

  2. The interview gives me the impression that the principle production people are very easy to work with by being open to ideas and input from others. So not only do I have admiration for RA, but also the director, assistant director, writers and producers. This production is truly a team effort. RA is getting a chance to spread his wings. The crew respects Richard and what he has to offer in all areas of this project. This is what happens when everyone puts their egos aside. Perhaps Richard will begin to think about being a writer and/or producer in the future. Words cannot really express how happy I am that Richard’s first starring role in a movie here in America is turning out to be such a pleasant experience. I do hope that a trailer of the movie will be provided soon.

    • It does seem like a real collaborative effort, which is wonderful. Richard is such a team player, willing to share ideas, always wanting what will make the production better. It must be a really good experience. Perhaps I am wrong or it’s just wishful thinking because he’s here in the good ol’ USA, but I get the impression this is a much happier filming experience than some of his past projects (setting aside TH, which he’s obviously been on cloud nine about).

      • I think he’s finding that the combination of talent and environment can be very freeing and conducive to creativity and enjoyment. That combination is not limited to the U.S. or NZ, but I’m sure you’re right that he’s having a happier work experience.

        • As a friend of mine once said when we were brainstorming for ideas for the next arts council fundraiser, “I love being with other creative people.” I think that’s true of Richard as well. I have said before that creativity breeds more creativity.

          I think there were, shall, we say, certain issues on the set of RH and Spooks that may have made them less enjoyable experiences for Richard as an artist. Not trashing the BBC; certainly N&S seems to have been a very satisfying experience for Richard.

          But I have heard that the RH set was not a particularly happy one.

          And I suspect playing a character who had been through the torment of Lucas–crafting him so carefully–and then having to undergo further torment of sorts when the writers cavalierly deconstruct that character–yes, it was a great acting challenge he was equal to, but it had to cause some wear and tear on his spirit. He did wonders with the Porter character, too, and was finally in something with a decent budget, but we know playing that character was also overwhelming for him at times.

          • I don’t really remember any quotes that make me think that working on RH and Spooks wasn’t a pleasant experience. To a degree I think that may be fans that are unhappy with certain decisions projecting their own feelings onto RA. The only thing he ever said publicly was expressing his disagreement with Marian’s death. I remember he congratulated Lara Pulver when she was cast in Spooks and told her to enjoy the experience or something in that respect. Didn’t sound very bitter to me.

            Be that as it may, I’m pleased to hear that the set of Black Sky seems to be a pleasant place and that he enjoys it and is well liked.

      • I have been having the same thoughts Angie. I think that Richard has been very happy with his experience filming Black Sky. I also feel that he is enjoying his extended stay in America. As he becomes more established here in his craft I would not at all be surprised if he took an apartment in NYC. As Leigh said this happy experience can happen any place as well as the US but I selfishly am glad it is happening here for him. I am so happy that the fans he has been meeting during filming have been courteous and not acting crazed.

        • Several years ago when he went out to Hollywood there was some director/producer who refused to shake Richard’s hand after their meeting. That’s always rankled with me and made me doubly want him to have a good experience on any project he might eventually do in the US. It also made me want to kick the living you-know-what out of that snooty guy. 😉 So it makes me even happier to know he’s enjoying himself AND getting treated with the respect he so obviously deserves.

          • Angie don’t get me started. What director/producer treated Richard like that? This was during an interview? What that major twit did to Richard will surely return to him tenfold. If I ever find out his name believe me I will make a huge blog post about his rudeness. He obviously lacks manners as well. Someone flies over from their country to yours and you act like an unwelcoming fool? I think that Hollywood got into his big head but he will be another person eating stale crow soon.

            • I don’t think Richard ever said the name of the individual, just that he was quite taken aback when he attempted to shake the man’s hand and this jerk refused, and well he should have been. It was as if this guy just couldn’t be bothered. Horribly rude. Yeah, he had come to do some auditions and try to put out some feelers in LA. re his career. I think this was the same visit where RA attempted an American accent at a reading and they didn’t realize it was supposed to be an American accent. A disappointing time for him all way round. However, it’s a whole new ball game now. I hope that guy is already choking on something.

              • Please correct me if I’m mistaken but I thought I read somewhere that it was the guy’s assistant or whatever that said, “He’s not shaking hands today” (or words to that effect) when Richard held out his hand. When I read it my first thought was, “What a freak”! However it went, it must have been a very uncomfortable moment.

              • My initial assumption would be “What a jerk!” although I have known individuals with psoriasis on their hands so severe that they are both pained and embarrassed by touch.

              • It would have been polite if he’d given an explanation if something like that was the case. 🙂

            • Of course it is bad manners and there is no excuse for bad manners, but it shows very clearly where RA was in the pecking order at that point of time. And that is what it is about, climbing the ladder and making a name of oneself, not being talented and delivering good work.

        • I absolutely adore Keanu, he seems like such a sweet guy but let’s face it, he’s not the most versatile of actors…OK, on to Matthew McConaughey..Well, he got good reviews for Magic Mike…

          • Of course,you’re right about Keanu,Judit. I’ve not seen the film you’re talking about but I checked the cast and let me tell you that the only plus is the absence of F.F Coppola nephew.;)
            I’m not quaided by views and opinions of critics but if you recommend that movie,I will watch it.!.:)

            • Joanna, I haven’t seen Magic Mike, but I read some very positive reviews about it…I normally like Steven Soderbergh’s films, but this one doesn’t appeal to me. I know the guys in it are supposed to be super hot but they do absolutely nothing for me. Richard has spoilt me! 🙂

              • Me too,Judit! 🙂 I’ve alvays been picky about men;)..I mean I love all type of men;)(small,tall,thin,muscular)he only must have flash of humor in his eyes. I married the class clown.

      • Poor Keanu. He’s so pretty and he really does seem like a nice guy, but–every time he opened his mouth in that Dracula movie, I expected him to say, “Whooooooa. Dude!!”

    • Yes, a critic from The Guardian (IIRC, please tell me if I’m wrong) routinely called him wooden when he was in Spooks (of all things). 😦 Was it Vicky Frost?

      • He was anything but “wooden” in Spooks! Enigmatic and cool at times, yes, but he was playing a spy with immense sangfroid. And for all the rotten writing in Spooks 9, Richard’s performance was a tour de force, showing a range you’d expect from one of the great Shakespeareans.

        • He was, I thought, a very cerebral character. There was a great deal he internalized as a coping measure after his horrible experience in the prison so naturally (and thank goodness) he wasn’t chewing up the scenery. Even when Lucas was still there was always that sense that the wheels were turning in there. He loved books, poetry. I saw Lucas as having an artistic soul (hence my decision to have him pair up with Monet and rediscover his love for drawing and painting). Yeah, he looked mighty pretty running through the streets in those tight jeans with his thighs bulging, but Richard made Lucas so much more than a hottie action man. I think his performances in both Spooks 9 and RH 3 were just–epic. It’s a shame the woman couldn’t see that.

          • Yes, yes…that is the word I was looking for to describe Richard’s acting. CEREBRAL! Richard was very cerebral in Spooks. Actually, I find him cerebral in RH, The Vicar of Dibley, Between the Sheets and what little I have seen so far in TH. Watching Richard I can see his mind working.

            I just Googled Vicky Frost and was reading some of her reviews. To me she comes off very full of herself. She is definitely going to be eating her words after The Hobbit and Black Sky comes out. She really needs to get a life. People like Ms.Frost get their kicks out of over analyzing which is what her reviews read like.

            • Richard’s intelligence always shines through. Some of the characters are more intense and some more laid-back, some more outwardly emotional and some more reticent–but we always know there is a mind at work behind those lovely blue eyes. It’s one of the things that is most attractive about him for me. Yes, Vicki does seem to have a rather high opinion of herself. As I said, I lost respect for her reviews after it was clear she wouldn’t recognize subtle, nuanced acting if her life depended on it.

      • What an absurd review of Richard performance in Spooks. It is one of Richard’s best performances. I would even say that he grew even more as an actor in Spooks.

      • Yes, Vicki Frost was one. She seemed to potentially pander to those viewers suffering from Male Pattern Jealousy, massaging their bruised egos. She herself displayed Sour Grapes Syndrome. I try not to malign people but she really was snarky about Richard. I remember her comment about “as to whether or not he (Richard) can actually act, the jury is still out.” In fact, I am going to have to restrain myself from saying anything further about Dear Ms. Frost except to say I hope come December she is dining on a huge amount of crow, if she isn’t already. *evil grin*

      • There also was someone who wrote the Radio Times Blog who came up with the idea that he wasn’t leading man material and that they did come up with such convoluted storyline for Spooks 9 because he wasn’t able to carry the show.

        As to Vicky Frost, I remember she did interview him once and was as smitten with him as everyone else but sadly that didn’t improve her opinion of his acting.

    • The British press never took him very seriously. And I believe in their eyes being handsome and having lots of female fans did harm his credibility as an artist. Having read articles that focused on that aspect and made fun of him and his fans for years made me so anxious that he finally gets the recognition he deserves. He didn’t get many bad reviews but was clearly considered a lightweight. It is such a relief that the few articles that announced his casting in the tornado movie suddenly called him an accomplished actor and not a hunky heartthrob.

      • the woman was sorely, sorely lacking in the Good Taste Gene. After reading her comments about Richard, it was hard for me to take any of her other reviews very seriously. Sort of the way I now feel about Lisa Schwarzbaum at Entertainment Weekly after she gave 50S0G and Battleship good reviews! 😉

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